9th Ave: Mary Cisper, Norma Cole and Jane Lin

Saturday, October 7, 2017 - 7:30pm

This event will be held at our 9th Ave. location.




Mary Cisper, Norma Cole and Jane Lin read from their latest poetry collections.


About Mary Cisper

Amid bindweed and migrating hummingbirds, Mary Cisper, poet and sometime visual artist, lives with her husband near Santa Fe, New Mexico.  Her first poetry collection, Dark Tussock Moth, won the 2016 Trio House Award (Trio House Press, 2017). Her poems and reviews have been published in various journals including Denver Quarterly, ZYZZYVA, Lana Turner, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Terrain, Water-Stone Review, Newfound, FIELD, and Omniverse.  She is a graduate of Saint Mary’s College of California MFA program where she studied with Brenda Hillman and Matthew Zapruder. A former chemist, she was once on intimate terms with ion trap mass spectrometers in search of ultra-low detection limits. Except when she’s in them, she misses the Sierras.


About Dark Tussock Moth


Dark Tussock Moth journeys through personal history, western landscapes touched by humans and drought, and the life and legacy of 17th century artist and naturalist Maria Sibylla Merian to explore metamorphosis:  “The mind can instantly connect one piece of information with any other piece.”      

Merian, who has been called the mother of ecology, documented insect and plant relationships.  Turning various lenses—ecopoetic, ekphrastic, philosophical—toward “the number of celestial objects”, this collection notes entanglements of memory and desire.  Place, flowers, and insects may be apertures, but what does it mean to look?  In the space between looking and surrender, Dark Tussock Moth hovers: “what makes itself : itself.”


About Jane Lin


Jane Lin is a poet and a software engineer for an environmental consulting company. She studied under Denise Levertov at Stanford University and received her MFA from New York University’s Creative Writing Program where she was a New York Times Company Foundation Creative Writing Fellow. Her poem “Signs and Portents” was transformed into an art song by Emmy Award-winning composer Glen Roven for his composition “The Santa Fe Songs” and appears on Talise Trevigne’s album At the Statue of Venus. Her honors include a Kundiman fellowship and scholarships from Bread Loaf Writers' Conference and Taos Summer Writers' Conference. For many years she taught creative writing at UNM-Los Alamos and facilitated the Mesa Public Library Poetry Gathering series. Jane lives in Northern New Mexico with her husband and daughter. She was born and raised on Long Island, NY.


About Day of Clean Brightness


Day of Clean Brightness reminds us of all of our many commonalities—the true complexity within our relationships with our parents and children, the deeply felt love and grief after loss, suffering and the unforgiving nature of disease. Life is lived in “the body/with its humors, intimate oils, the skin's/wavering—bits of inessential/growth in delicate folds.”


How do we nurture bonds despite physical distance and the distance of time? For the author, it begins internally and manifests in poem after poem. She imagines the maternal grandmother she has never met going “out into the night, midwife...striding with a purpose,” addresses the friend who is rumored to have died, “my colleague of cellos,/ stand partner, fellow cat lover, griever of mothers, mother/of daughters.” When helpless before her mother's pain, she “clasp[s] hands, send[s] love/down [her] arm.”


Day of Clean Brightness is an act of will “to honor those we love because that's all we have left."


About Norma Cole


Norma Cole is a poet, painter and translator. Her most recent poetry publications are a little a & a (Seeing Eye Books) and Spinoza in Her Youth (Omnidawn Press). SCOUT, a text/image work was brought out by Krupskaya Editions in CD-ROM format. Among her poetry books are MARS (Listening Chamber, 1994), MOIRA (O Books, 1995) and Contrafact (Potes and Poets Press, 1996). Translation work includes Danielle Collobert's NOTEBOOKS, 1956-1978, Anne Portugal's NUDE, CROSSCUT UNIVERSE: WRITING ON WRITING FROM FRANCE, and Fouad Gabriel Naffah's MIND-GOD AND THE PROPERTIES OF NITROGEN. Cole has been the recipient of a Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation Award, Gertrude Stein Awards, as well as awards from The Fund for Poetry. "Poetics of Vertigo," Cole's George Oppen Memorial Lecture, won the Robert D. Richardson Non-Fiction Award. She teaches in the Bay area and is on the faculty of the MFA program at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles. Canadian by birth, Cole migrated via France to San Francisco where she has lived since 1977.


About Actualities


 In this lambent collaboration, visual artist Marina Adams echoes the spareness of Norma Cole's language with delicate lines that contour muscular negative spaces, sometimes stark and densely foreboding, sometimes luxuriant with color. Norma Cole dialogues with Marina Adams with syncopated poems concerned with fragmentation, transformation, love, precarity, and the tenuousness of kinship between places, things, and being. In ACTUALITIES, poet and artist meditate in tandem, moving between anxiety and reconciliation, in a call and response with one another, and with a cosmos that continuously thwarts knowing, refusing to sit still.



Dark Tussock Moth Cover Image
ISBN: 9780996586467
Availability: NOT on our shelves now. Usually ships from warehouse in several days.
Published: Trio House Press - February 12th, 2017

Actualities Cover Image
By Norma Cole, Marina Adams (Artist)
Temporarily Unavailable
ISBN: 9781933959283
Published: Litmus Press - September 1st, 2015

Poetry. Art. In this lambent collaboration, visual artist Marina Adams echoes the spareness of Norma Cole's language with delicate lines that contour muscular negative spaces, sometimes stark and densely foreboding, sometimes luxuriant with color.

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